Priming - Changing Behavior

Priming is an implicit memory effect in which exposure to one stimulus influences the response to another stimulus. src Wiki. If a person reads a list of words including the word table, and is later asked to complete a word starting with tab, the probability that he or she will answer table is greater than if they are not primed.

women who are sometimes less confident in leadership roles can be primed to feel empowered and more confident when delivering a speech in public if they can see a photograph of a powerful political female figure like Angela Merkel or Hillary Clinton src Marketing Society

Female and male students were asked to give a public speech in a room with a poster of Hillary Clinton, Angela Merkel, Bill Clinton, or no picture. Researchers recorded the length of the speech as an objective measure of empowered behavior in a stressful leadership task.

The gender leadership gap disappeared when women were exposed to a female role model: Female speakers who spoke in front of an image of Hillary Clinton increased their speech times by 24%, and those who spoke in front of an image of Angela Merkel increase their speech times by 49%, compared to the average of the control conditions.

When women spoke in front of female role models, their speeches were rated higher in quality, increasing from 2.6 to 3.0 on a 5-point scale, and they more positively perceived their own performance. src Harvard Kennedy school . For the full paper on Research Gate

Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success.

Cuddy and colleagues tested the effect of the power pose on candidates attending a job interview. Some posed beforehand (in private for a couple of minutes) in a high power pose and others in a low power pose. The result? The interviewers wanted to hire all the people who had been in the high power pose because they were considered to have more presence and confidence and appeared more authentic than the others.

Amy Cuddy's TeD Talk

What about exposure to Brands?

In this research participants primed with Apple logos behave more creatively than IBM primed and controls; Disney-primed participants behave more honestly than E! primed participants and controls.

What about Odor?
In this research mere exposure to the scent of all-purpose cleaner caused participants to keep their direct environment more clean during an eating task. Awareness checks showed that participants were unaware of this influence. The present studies reveal the nonconscious influence that olfactory cues can have on thinking and doing.


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